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It was the moment that almost every patient dreaded. The intercom came on, signaling the end of night and of any progress they might have made.

And the Head Doctor sounded appropriately smug. "Well, you little rats have been scurrying all over tonight, haven't you? Down below, up high, it's certainly fun to keep track of everything..."

He chuckled. "Inch your way a little further each night, and eventually you think you'll find an end to this maze? That's the idea, isn't it? We'll just have to wait and see if you're right about that."

Oddly calm in comparison to how he'd been at the start of the night, the Head Doctor left it at that. The intercom switched off and the night came to a sudden end.
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While it might have been nice for the patients to have an even longer break from the Head Doctor's voice, they were not quite that lucky. They were never given a complete chance to let their guard down, as was shown when the intercom came on both inside and outside with the sound of Landel's voice.

"Apologies for my absence, patients!" he said, sounding far more chipper than he had that morning. "I had a few things to take care of -- don't worry, nothing serious -- but it seems that the staff has managed just fine without me. Sometimes I wonder if they could run this place without me!" He chuckled lowly.

"Your last shift of the day will be the opposite of the second shift, like always, which means that adults will be in the Arts and Crafts room while the under eighteen patients will go to take a nice shower.

"Whether you're cleaning yourself or fingerpainting, do enjoy yourself! Night will be here before we know it, after all." And all of the patients knew what that meant.

The intercom shut off and the nurses went to gather up the patients.
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The dawn came in fragments of orange light, filtering through gray clouds scattered across the sky. Something about today's start evoked a sense of productivity in the workers. By the time the intercom clicked on for the daily wake-up call, the staff was already finishing up their morning duties.

The Head Doctor seemed to find the detail appropriate enough to make a cheery note of it.

"Rise and shine, everybody!" he greeted. "Thanks to the tireless efforts of our workers, we were able to get breakfast piping hot and ready for your consumption. Today, we will be serving an array of English muffin sandwiches, with your choice of egg, sausage, bacon, and cheese. For sides, cereal and fresh fruit will be available. We will also have our usual assortment of drinks."

This time, he concluded without pause. "That should be all. Have a happy breakfast!"

The intercom clicked off.
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The Head Doctor seemed fairly drained of energy as the intercom finally came on after what seemed like an exceedingly long wait.

"Hmm.... I think we're all tired enough that I can skimp out on the details, right?" The Head Doctor made a valiant effort to laugh heartily. "In any case, four of you will be taken in for Special Counseling tonight; to the rest of you, I bid you a very good night, and look forward to new patients joining you tomorrow!"

The intercom turned off suddenly, just as it had earlier in the day.
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"Hello, everyone, and I hope you enjoyed the first item on our new lunch menu!" The Head Doctor said in a jolly tone as the intercom clicked on in its usual manner. "Next up, we'll be having activities in the Game Room for those who wish to participate; the Sun Room will also, of course, be open for lounging.

"We'll also be continuing our therapy sessions for the next batch of assigned patients, so would the nurses be so kind as to escort them to their respective doctor offices? Thank you!

"Sorry that I can't speak any further, but I am happy to announce that the reason for my brevity is the need to organize new rooms for a new batch of patients. Once again, you'll all have the opportunity to make new friends!

"As always, I look forward to the next time I may speak to you, and farewell!"

The intercom clicked off again.
damned_intercom: (The Intercom)
The storm had drawn close. Dark clouds obscured the blue sky that usually graced the grounds of Landel's Institute, and the intermittent sound of thunder echoed throughout the dark, empty hallways of the hospital. The wind howled. The intercom clicked on.

"Good evening, everyone!" The Head Doctor called out in a voice that seemed more appropriate for a ringmaster than a man with medical degrees. A short, soft chuckling ensued, which ended in a long sigh, as if the man in question was reclining in an assumedly comfortable chair. One could almost see him steepling his fingers.

"I'm sure you're all wondering if I'm God at this point, summoning storms and razing the ground with lightning bolts and all that." A pause. "The truth of the matter is... no, I'm not, but I had might as well be, so much do I control your sad, pathetic little world."

The faint squeak as said chair rocked back and forth. Suddenly, the sound of a hand slamming against the wooden top of a desk. The voice was lower, more dangerous than before.

"But you don't believe that yet, do you? Even after everything I've done?" A crackly, whooshing sound as he waved his arm through the air. "After new facilities and new nurses and species and rules and building behavioral settings and treatments and solutions and every little goddamn thing--"

His voice had descended to a whisper that was louder than his words from before for the fact that his mouth had gone so close to the microphone. He paused, then seemed to pull back from it again. His voice went back to what it had been before.

"But no matter. I'll let you go out and play early tonight, because, why yes---" he had begun to laugh without mirth "--I am a merciful soul if I feel like you things deserve it after everything I've done for you. In fact..."

Again, his whisper had gone loud.

"I've brought you some new playmates, and... modified some of the old ones. Did I mention your playground has some brand new swings?"

His voice suddenly went loud again, as if calling out the names of winners.

"Lucille Belli! Regina Ellis! James Shepherd! You three are going to through some very special counseling tonight, and I'm sure everyone will be surprised to see just what a difference it can make in a person!"

Another creaking sound, as if he was moving to turn off the switch. He paused, adding:

"Oh! Silly me, almost forgetting. Please welcome four brand new souls to the playground of the damned---Marcus Bailey, Charlie Brown, Morrigan ChaƮne, and Keane Fuchs! Welcome them with some very open arms!"

Another laugh, then another. The intercom, with one last hiss of static, clicked off as thunder cracked and lightning tore through the sky.

The doors unlocked.

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The Intercom

September 2013

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